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Sunday, June 23, 2024
Sunday June 23, 2024
Sunday June 23, 2024

US seeks Security Council backing for latest hostage proposal

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Biden asserts Israel’s readiness to advance deal, urges Qatari pressure on Hamas

US President Joe Biden has requested Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani to pressure Hamas into accepting Israel’s latest hostage deal proposal. The White House confirmed Israel’s readiness to move forward with the terms offered to Hamas and urged Qatar to use all appropriate measures to secure Hamas’ acceptance of the deal. Biden’s directive to Qatar marks one of the most far-reaching public entreaties by the US to Doha, which hosts many of Hamas’s political leaders.

Biden’s appeal follows Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s claim that gaps exist between the latest Israeli hostage deal proposal and what the war cabinet had authorized. The President’s call to the Qatari Emir emphasized the comprehensive ceasefire and hostage release deal now on the table, offering a concrete roadmap for ending the crisis in Gaza. Biden urged Hamas to accept the deal and for the Israeli government to stand behind it, stating that Hamas’ ongoing refusal to release hostages would prolong the conflict and deny relief to the people of Gaza.

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The proposal outlines a phased approach: the first phase includes the release of female, elderly, and sick hostages taken during Hamas’s October 7 attack. The second phase involves permanent ceasefire negotiations and the release of remaining living hostages. The third phase sees the release of the bodies of hostages and the start of an internationally-backed reconstruction plan for Gaza. The US, Egypt, and Qatar are committed to the full implementation of the agreement, with Biden emphasizing that Hamas is now the only obstacle to a complete ceasefire and relief for Gaza’s people.

US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan also communicated with a top aide to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, highlighting the urgent need for Hamas to accept Israel’s proposal. While Turkey does not formally host Hamas leaders, they spend significant time in the country, which holds influence over the group. Erdoğan has hailed Hamas as “freedom fighters,” complicating Turkey’s ties with Israel since the October 7 attack.

An official informed The Times of Israel that Hamas leaders’ initial reactions to the latest Israeli proposal were “overwhelmingly positive,” though they have yet to formally respond. Hamas is expected to send a delegation to Cairo to discuss the proposal, with mediators expressing optimism about the chances for a deal. Meanwhile, foreign ministers from the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan, and Egypt expressed their support for Biden’s latest effort to secure a hostage-ceasefire deal, with the G7 also endorsing the proposal.

The US has submitted a new resolution to the United Nations Security Council expressing support for the latest Israeli proposal. US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield urged the Security Council to endorse the plan, emphasizing the need to bring hostages home, ensure a complete ceasefire, and facilitate humanitarian assistance and long-term reconstruction for Gaza.

However, Israeli officials have pushed back on elements of Biden’s proposal, with Netanyahu insisting that gaps exist between the Israeli version and Biden’s recounting of it. Netanyahu reiterated that Israel will not end the war in Gaza until its three war aims are achieved: destroying Hamas’s military and civil governance capabilities, securing the release of all hostages, and ensuring that Gaza no longer poses a threat to Israel.

Leaked clauses of the deal indicate that phase one negotiations include a temporary cessation of military operations and aid efforts. These ambiguous terms have led to disagreements between Israel and Hamas, with Netanyahu’s comments potentially complicating the deal. Despite these challenges, Biden remains committed to securing an agreement, highlighting that the US and its allies will continue to support the proposal’s implementation.

Analysis

The US seeks Security Council backing for Israel’s latest hostage proposal, highlighting its strategic and diplomatic significance. From a political perspective, Biden’s efforts reflect the US’s commitment to resolving the Gaza crisis and strengthening alliances with Middle Eastern partners. Urging Qatar to pressure Hamas indicates a tactical approach, leveraging regional influence to achieve diplomatic goals. This move underscores the Biden administration’s emphasis on multilateral cooperation and regional stability.

Sociologically, the proposal aims to address the humanitarian crisis in Gaza by ensuring the release of hostages and initiating a reconstruction plan. This phased approach prioritizes human rights and welfare, aiming to alleviate the suffering of civilians. The emphasis on international cooperation and humanitarian aid highlights the global community’s responsibility to support conflict-affected populations.

Economically, the reconstruction plan for Gaza signifies a long-term investment in regional stability and development. The proposed deal includes an internationally-backed reconstruction plan, which could boost Gaza’s economy and infrastructure. This economic revival is crucial for sustainable peace and prosperity in the region, offering hope for improved living conditions and economic opportunities for Gaza’s residents.

Locally, the proposal addresses the immediate security concerns of both Israel and Gaza. For Israel, achieving a ceasefire and securing the release of hostages aligns with its national security priorities. For Gaza, the end of hostilities and the promise of reconstruction offer a pathway to recovery and stability. This local impact highlights the importance of addressing the specific needs and concerns of the affected communities.

Gender considerations also play a role in the proposal, with the initial phase focusing on releasing female, elderly, and sick hostages. This approach acknowledges the vulnerabilities of these groups and prioritizes their safety and well-being. By addressing the needs of these vulnerable populations, the proposal reflects a commitment to gender-sensitive humanitarian efforts.

From a race and minority perspective, the proposal aims to address the broader conflict dynamics between Israelis and Palestinians. Ensuring the release of hostages and initiating reconstruction efforts can contribute to reducing tensions and fostering coexistence. The emphasis on a two-state solution and peace negotiations aligns with international efforts to address the long-standing Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

In conclusion, the US’s push for Security Council backing for Israel’s latest hostage proposal reflects a multifaceted approach to addressing the Gaza crisis. By leveraging political, sociological, economic, and humanitarian considerations, the proposal aims to achieve a comprehensive and sustainable resolution. The success of this initiative depends on the willingness of all parties to engage in meaningful negotiations and uphold their commitments to peace and stability.

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